The last time I did the Top 10 Must-Buy Korean Beauty Products When in South Korea, it was a hit! Since then I get questions from friends asking me to do the same for other countries like Japan, Taiwan, China, etc. I guess, for a beauty junkie, no matter where you go, you would want to take a stash of the local beauty products back home to try. Since I will be going to Paris soon, I thought I would do a Top 10 Must-Buy French Beauty Products When in Paris. I did a lot of research on French products but most recommendations are very generic. The brands featured are easily available in our drugstore as well. After much research, I can finally have a list of must-buy of my own. Please go through the list below for my recommended products/brands that you should try when in Paris. If you have any products or brand you would like to suggest to me, please feel free to leave me a comment.
Top #1 - Laduree Les Merveilleuses
On the top of my list has always been Laduree. Besides making really delish macarons with cute packaging, Laduree also has different extension for their brand that cater for home fragrance, stationery, and cosmetics. The packaging for anything Laduree is to die for! It makes every girl's dream of having a boudoir vanity come true. That is, if you can afford to buy all of the cosmetic products. I can't justify having to pay so much for their cosmetic, so I limit myself in getting one product at a time. The products you should go for are those that have really cute packaging and last (almost) forever. If you are concern about the quality of the products, rest assured that you will get the same quality of Anna Sui, Jill Stuart and Paul & Joe. They are from the same manufacturer.
To beautify your vanity - Get the brushes, brush holder, hand mirror, skincare, Face Colour Rose, and Face Powder
To keep in your little purse - Get the Cream Cheek Base and Pressed Cheek Colour
Available at: Sephora Champs Elysees, Sephora Haussmann, Sephora Medeleine
Top #2 - L'Oreal Paris
Don't be surprised to see L'Oreal Paris on the list. In Paris, L'Oreal is a huge brand for cosmetic. They have products that aren't available outside Paris. My advice is to go for the coloured products such as blush, lipstick (their lipsticks are superb), nail polish and eyeshadows. No matter how tempting the foundations, BB Cream, CC Cream or any other skin-based products are, avoid it. They are made to suit European market. It is safer to purchase those products back in Asia.But whatever limited edition coloured makeups are, grab it or you will regret.
Available at: All Sephoras, major shopping malls, major drugstore
Top #3 - Chanel
If handbag and clothing aren't your week spot, good news! The 31 Rue Cambon (the original Chanel boutique) do offer their makeup collection as well. To be honest, the collections are generic. You can get it at any Chanel counters throughout the world. But if you're a true Chanel fan, it does add the x-factor in purchasing it directly from 31 Rue Cambon. It is also an experience to be able to see the boutique itself where Coco Chanel residing during her glory days. Take a photo at the infamous staircase where she peeped her fashion show guests. The boutique will give you a cocktail feelings of mysterious, excitement, luxury and chic all roll into one. So, there's no harm getting a bottle of Chanel No.5 from the store for the sake of being chic in the heart of Paris.
Top #4 - Caudalie
In Malaysia, Caudalie is expensive. But in France, Caudalie can be considered as a drugstore brand. Almost every Parisian girl owns a bottle of their Overnight Detox Oil and apparently it gives their skin that eternal youthful look. If you are not familiar with the brand, Caudalie is a eco-friendly skincare brand which uses the goodness of grapes in all their products. It is said to have a strong anti-aging elements derived from natural ingredients.
Top #5 - Bourjois
Bourjois is probably the most underrated cosmetic brand in Asia. If you know the brand history, you will be eager to try it. Bourjois products are coming from the same manufacturer as Chanel cosmetics. But for a fraction of Chanel price, Bourjois offers the same quality. It is unfortunate to see the brand died out in Malaysia. The fact that it is a huge brand in France, you should at least try their baked blush or mascara.
Top #6 - Avene
If you pay attention to French skincare, they like to use a special ingredient called Eau Thermal. It is rain water which flows from high land. In the process, it picks up a lot of minerals and contains higher oxygen concentration in the water. Avene is great for extremely sensitive skin people. If you experience really bad sensitive skin, get their compact foundation or fluid foundation. The fact that sensitive skin people can't enjoy face products that often, Avene is a god-sent! Avene is generally available in Malaysia, but it is a lot cheaper in Paris and they have a wide range of coverage makeups which they don't export to Malaysia.
Top #7 - Lancome
Yes, Lancome is another brand available here. But if you've been to Paris before, you will notice they do have a lot of products that we've never seen before. For instance, the Maison Lancome collection is definitely an eye-catcher. If you are an avid perfume collector like me, do grab a bottle of the Oud Bouquet. Lancome is also a lot cheaper in Paris than in Malaysia. Don't miss your chance to stock up if you are existing user of Lancome. If you haven't try any of their products, it is also a great chance for you to pick up some.
Top #8 - Diptyque
The 34 Boulevard Saint Germain is on the top of my to-visit during my trip. Not only I adore Diptyque's candle (it makes my home smell so good) but I also love their fragrance. The store itself is a work of art. They still preserve the old school apothecary interior which is very rare these days. Originally producing only candles and perfumes, Diptyque also launched their own skincare line which is very luxurious and smells really good.
Top #9 - Milani
Milani is an Italian cosmetic brand. If Paris is your only stop, you are able to stock up some of their goodies here as well. Milani has a reputation of good quality products and sleek packaging. It is really affordable and they have a wide range of colours for you to choose from. Pick up some of their blush and lipstick, you'd be hooked.
Top #10 - Filosofille
If you are looking for really chic souvenir for your girlfriends (those not generic like Eiffel Tower keychain or Arc de Triomphe fridge magnet), the Filosofille collections will make you go crazy. It is a brand that don't sell any skincare or cosmetics, but beauty accessories, namely compact mirror, nail file, brush kit, makeup pouch, etc. The best thing is, everything is themed as Parisian. Your girlfriends will definitely love it. Not only it is a romantic gift, it is also very thoughtful gift as well. While you are looking for the souvenirs for your girlfriends, keep some for yourself too. You will be spoilt with choices of their pretty designs.